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What is Proportional or Disproportional sizing?

Quite often, our customers will send us their artwork and tell us it has to be a specific size. However, sometimes the artwork they send cannot be made exactly to the size that they require. Why is this?

Let’s say the artwork you sent measures 100mm x 50mm, a rectangle. However, you need your plate to be 70mm x 50mm. We would not be able to make the artwork you sent exactly to your size without stretching it in a certain length to match your size. This is what we mean by Disproportionately altering the size of your artwork. Some customers would want us to do this, but most don’t want us to stretch/alter the artwork.

So, what if you didn’t want your artwork to be stretched? If 70mm was the size you could print with, we would reduce the size proportionately. This would mean that the length would be the size that you asked for (70mm) but the width (50mm) would be different from the required width at 35mm. For example, you cannot fit a rectangle into aThe illustration below shows the clear difference between disproportional and proportional artwork.

Example of artwork disproportioned and proportioned

Most graphic design software has a tool that keeps the artwork size in proportion. Adobe Illustrator calls it the constrain tool. In CorelDRAW, it is called Proportional. You can use these features to test see if your artwork fits your specified size.

Hopefully, this post helps you to understand the difference between disproportionate artwork and proportionate artwork. If you need your plate to be a specific size, make sure to check that the artwork is proportionate to that size. If not, check that the artwork can be disproportionately sized to your specifications without making the artwork wrong.

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